Italy experiences worst drought in 70 years
by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – Italy is going through its worst drought since 1952, with record low levels of water in the vast Po river which crosses the country as a vital source of water for several regions, Euronews reports.
Hard-hit regional authorities are calling on the government to declare a state of emergency.
An early onset of summer with little rain and high temperatures has caused a scarcity of snow on Italy’s Alps, resulting in a shortage of water entering the country’s rivers, Euronews said.
One of the most affected rivers, the Po, runs all the way from the Alps in the northwest to the Adriatic Sea on the east coast of Italy, carrying water for drinking and irrigation and for producing hydroelectric power in northern Italy.
There have now been drought-related power shortages in the north, and requests for citizens in more than 100 towns in the Po valley to ration water.
In a statement, Junior health minister Andrea Costa said that in Lombardy, Piedmont, Veneto and Emilia Romagna “the conditions necessary to declare a state of emergency have been met.”
The Po is not the only river causing alarm: the Arno, which provides Florence with tap water, and the Tiber in Rome, both have only half the water they normally have in June.
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